Bring a Side!

ultimate-caprese-salad

Photo by Laura Murray for Bon Appétit
Are you up to your ears in sweet corn? Tumbling over tomatoes? Covered in cucumbers? Here are a few yummy, easy ideas about how to transform your local produce into side dishes for family dinners, picnics, and potlucks. (We predict you’ll be popular!)

Mexican Corn Salad

Recipe via Bon Appétit

4 ears of corn, husked
3 tsp. mayonnaise
2 T. fresh lime juice
⅛ tsp. paprika
Cayenne pepper (optional)
2 oz. Cotija cheese or Parmesan, crumbled (about ½ cup), plus more for serving
2 T. chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for serving
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper

Prepare grill for medium heat. Grill corn, turning occasionally, until tender and charred, 8–10 minutes; let cool slightly. Cut kernels from cobs and transfer to a medium bowl.

Whisk mayonnaise, lime juice, paprika, a dash of cayenne, if using, 2 oz. cheese, and cilantro in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Add corn and toss to combine. Top with more cheese and cilantro.

Dressing can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill. Corn can be grilled and cut from cobs 1 hour ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Thai Cucumber Salad

Recipe via Martha Stewart

½ c. rice vinegar
Kosher salt
½ c. red onion, thinly sliced
¼ c. roasted unsalted peanuts, roughly chopped
2 T. sugar
2½ c. cucumber, thinly sliced
1 Thai chile, thinly sliced (seeded for less heat, if desired)
½ c. fresh herbs, such as Thai basil, mint, and cilantro, roughly chopped

Bring vinegar, sugar, and ½ teaspoon salt to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to medium and cook until mixture has consistency of syrup, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl; let cool completely.

Add cucumber, onion, and chile; toss to combine. Let stand until cucumbers absorb liquid, 5 minutes, then toss again. Salad can be refrigerated, covered, up to 1 week. Top with peanuts and herbs just before serving.

Ultimate Caprese Salad

Recipe via Bon Appétit

1 pt. mixed cherry tomatoes, preferably heirloom, halved
7 T. (or more) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Flaky sea salt
2 lbs. mixed medium and large tomatoes, preferably heirloom, cut into thin slices and/or wedges
8 oz. buffalo mozzarella or mozzarella, room temperature, torn into pieces
Coarsely ground black pepper
Small basil leaves and toasted country bread (for serving)
Toss cherry tomatoes with 1 T. olive oil in a small bowl; season with salt.

Arrange tomato slices on a platter, slightly overlapping; season generously with salt. Arrange mozzarella over tomatoes; lightly season mozzarella with salt. Spoon cherry tomatoes over salad and drizzle with 6 Tbsp. oil; season with pepper. Let stand 30 minutes to let flavors meld and release juices from tomatoes and mozzarella.

Top salad with basil and additional salt and oil, if desired. Serve with bread alongside.

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